No one disputes the fact that hiring in today’s employment market is a challenge in nearly every industry, and the roofing industry is no exception. To ensure we attain top industry talent and build the best teams possible, we adhere to a four-point strategy to maintain the strongest team we possibly can.
1. Recruit Constantly Skills are not nearly as important as a prospect’s alignment with our Core Values. We can teach skills, but character is unswayable. We have found technical schools, veterans’ groups and other similar programs to be useful to identify employee prospects. However, over many years, we have found the most success with referrals from current employees. We typically offer a $15.00/hour starting wage, a company-matched 401(k), a generous holiday/vacation and leave policies, and our company pays 69% of family coverage and 73% of single coverage for health, dental and vision insurance. In a competitive labor market, recruiting is a daily effort. We work to put out the word: “Standard is looking for a few good people!”
“Take care of your employees and they will take care of your business. It’s as simple as that.” —Sir Richard Branson, Founder, Virgin Group.
2. Hire and Fire Deliberately It’s imperative to identify the right hires and fires according to our Core Values, our Core Focus and our Company Vision. And it’s vital to place them in the position best suited to their talents and our firm’s needs and then placing confidence in their ability to further our vision and propel Standard in the right direction. Quite simply - get the right people in the right seats on the bus and have confidence that those people will drive the bus in the right direction. (see Jim Collins’ Built to Last) Conversely, when you have the wrong person on the bus, it is just as important to take the often-difficult action to remove them from the bus.
“If a company consistently grows revenue faster than its ability to get enough of the right people to implement that growth, it will not simply stagnate; it will fall.” —David Packard.
3. Offer “Opportunity Vision” To those recruits who meet certain criteria and accept the path of ever-increasing responsibility, provide them with a clear vision of what they can accomplish with Standard. Our company has real-life examples of recruits who started out fresh – as a laborer or sheet metal apprentice - and now are Division Managers. Each one of them developed their field skills, grew in responsibility and assumed leadership positions. At Standard, all employees are on a competitive salary plus a performance-based bonus system. If the division for which they work is successful financially, all the while holding Safety, Quality and Customer Service as guiding principles, then each employee shares in the financial success of the company. A quote we share with new recruits comes from General Colin Powell:
An aspiring Colonel asked General Colin Powell: “General, how do I become a General?” General Powell’s response was: “First, become a great Colonel.”
4. Provide Progress Reviews Provide every employee a quarterly and annual review of progress, keeping in mind adherence to Core Values, Core Focus and the Standard Vision.
By staying consistent in our recruiting and development efforts while keeping a clear focus on Standard’s Purpose; “To build a great and sustainable company for future generations.”, Standard employees will be successful. And with that, client satisfaction and success for Standard will follow.